It was naive to think that the contretemps between Jim Irsay and Peyton Manning would simmer down for the week. And they did not exactly put out the fire.
Last week’s episode in a nutshell: Peyton’s doctors say he has been medically cleared to play. Irsay’s doctors say he has not. Clear as mud.
Irsay earlier tweeted that he didn't mind paying “$26,000,000.00 to #18” referencing the $26.4 million he paid Manning last season (evidently forgetting the extra $400,000.00), spinning a $26 million “pre-severance” prior to an expected decline of the $28 option million plus future salaries.
Irsay has demurred every opportunity to welcome Peyton back, and a new general manager and coach have avoided the subject.
As for Manning, I thought the money quote from his ESPN interview was that he “will always have a great relationship with Mr. Irsay and Indianapolis.” From a distant location.
The 2012 NFL waiver system begins today. The Colts must make an affirmative decision to exercise Manning’s option – or not – between now and March 8th. Regarding suggestions that Manning may move the date back, he would much prefer to move the date forward. This should not linger.
The other 31 NFL teams can monitor Manning for the coming months and structure a contract to address the downside risk and upside potential of Manning. The one team that does not have the luxury of time with Manning is the Colts.
Stay tuned, perhaps sooner rather than later.
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